Meet the New Member of 3E

This week we’ve been learning more about descriptive writing.  We’ve been collecting adjectives.  They are perfect for adding a bit of description when we want to elaborate on our ideas.

To practice using adjectives we created adjective poems.  We created this one together.



New, tiny

New, tiny, speckled gecko

Cute insectivore.

Once we understood the process, each of the students created an adjective poem to accompany their leaf symmetry project.  Please open each of the student’s blogs to find their amazing leaf poems, and more!

Thanks for all your motivating comments!

Our Week – October 26

We are very busy. We’re trying to establish a safe habit for our class reptile – leopard geckos.  They live in the desert so it has to be hot.  We are trying to find a safe way to make sure the temperature doesn’t drop too much at night and on the weekends.  It’s been an interesting and exciting process.  We also had the opportunity (a high pressure system moving in) to set up our storm glass so now our weather corner has another tool that we can use to predict the weather.

We’ve been preparing for student-led goal setting conferences, writing informational weather essays, exploring description and learning about symmetry.

Setting Goals – Preparing for Student Led Conferences in November

This week we’ve spent time thinking about goals.  We’ve tried to be specific.  We’ve tried to make our goals about something important and doable.  We’re also thinking about the evidence we might collect to show we have accomplished our goals.

We began our discussion with reading.  We’ve been paying attention to how each reader can grow.  Here’s what we decided:

Reading grows if…

… you have good reading habits.

  • You get your book box ready
  • You read books that challenge you some, and that you will stick with and read from cover to cover.
  • You read most of independent reading time with only a little looking or skimming and scanning.

…you try reading different types (genre) of books.

…you keep track of your thinking so you can show it or tell it to others.

…you learn new words and develop word attack skills.

Once we discovered what we might do to grow as readers, we set a goal for the week.  We called it a W.O.W. (within one week) goal.  We’ve discovered that even though we know how we might improve our reading skills, we don’t always do what will help us.  We really do have to make a plan if we are going to accomplish what we set out to do.  We’re trying to explore new books and spend more time thinking about what we’re reading.  They deserve to be proud of all they are attempting and doing as readers.

Exploring Symmetry

This month our calendar is filled with a pattern of polygons.  We’re learning about different types of triangles, quadrilaterals, pentagons and hexagons.  We’ve discovered that when they are called “regular” shapes the sides and angles are equal.  “Regular” shapes often have many lines of symmetry. Symmetry is all around us.   We’ve looked for things in the classroom that are symmetrical and we’ve explored symmetry in nature too.

Developing our Writing Using Elaboration Strategies

We began to explore ways of expanding our writing by adding description.  We’ve been learning about traits and adjectives.  We’ve begun to categorize words that could be included in descriptions and we’ve been challenging ourselves to find as many ways as possible to describe one thing.  Here are our descriptions of a nest – a list of words that turned into a poem.






















Bits and Pieces –

  • The Wild Robot is full of wonderful characters and rich description.  Ask your child to describe his or her favorite part so far.  Some of it’s funny.  Some of it’s worrisome?  We’re wondering how the story will end.
  •  Picture retakes will be on November 1.  If you plan to have your child’s picture retaken, they’ll need to bring the packet back on that date.  If they were absent your child should plan on having his or her picture taken on the first.
  • We have a new outdoor challenge schedule.  Mr. Guidi (Mr. G to the children) will be leading these challenges.  Here is a new list of dates.
  • Thanks for putting them on your calendar.  We will be outside if at all possible.

3rd Grade Challenges – 3E

  1. November 7th
  2. November 28th
  3. December 12th
  4. January 2nd
  5. January 16th
  6. January 30th
  7. February 13th
  8. March 6th
  9. March 20th
  10. April 10th
  11. May 1st
  12. May 15th
  13. May 29th



Check our Multiplication Riddles

We are having lots of fun blogging.  Thank you so much for the wonderful comments.  Having an audience for our writing and our ideas is very motivating.

We hope you’ll enjoy our third post.  This one has to do with the new math we are learning.  Each of the students created and posted a multiplication riddle following the format of Each Orange Had Eight Slices.

We hope you enjoy them.  If you solve any of the riddles, please leave your answers in a comment.  Have fun with math!

Our Week – October 19

Thanks for supporting our reading museum and helping the children take note of he fact that learning continues on and on.  Thank you also for your attention to making time for homework.  Many of the kids were super excited about having that responsibility. We began our week by thinking about a series of precepts:  “If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.”, “Practice makes perfect.”, “”Whether you think you can or whether you think you can’t, you’re probably right.”, and ”Practice makes progress.” We had some great conversation about what we can do to make sure learning grows.

This week everyone created a second blog post, more of the children were able to solidify and apply their understanding of the distributive property during daily problem solving and we defined the criteria we would use to create “great” pieces of informational weather writing.

Reading Grows

This week we shared books important to each of us as readers.  The class shared favorite books read when they were babies, read-alouds they loved hearing over and over and over again as toddlers and favorite chapter books shared as a family.  It was fun to tour the class’s reading museum.  Some children realized they had brought in the same book. (I discovered that Good Night Construction Siteis a must for our grandson, James.) Others were reminded of favorites from the past.  It was fun to revisit books that may not have been looked at for a while.

After the museum on Tuesday, we reflected on the reading we’d been doing in the first month and a half of school.  We thought about the books we’d been choosing to read and we considered the difference between “reading”, “skimming and scanning” and “looking through.”  All are important habits to have, but we agreed that much of the time we have in our classroom with books should be dedicated to reading.  The only way to grow as a reader is to practice.  We reflected on what we’d been reading so far and the school year, and what habits we’d been most focused on.  Are next steps will be to develop goals that will lead us forward and help us to grow.

Multiplying With Large Amounts

We’ve been learning how to use what we know about place value to help us multiply larger amounts. We’ve been trying to use the distributive property, because these steps more often help us with accuracy.  They remind use to multiply everything – not just the hundreds and tens, but also the ones.

The problems have been written to help the children practice using this skill to become more efficient. More and more of the children are feeling sure of themselves with this strategy.

Experimenting with Leads /

Establishing the Guideline We Plan to Follow for Our Weather Writing

We learned about four different types of leads: snapshot, question, dialogue and onomatopoeia.  We had a go at playing around with each of them. We’ve tried choosing words that paint a picture.  We’ve thought about the sounds we’d hear if we were to enter the setting of our piece of writing to consider if that would make an impactful start.  We’ve thought of creating characters to speak and introduce our topic or story.  And finally, we’ve wonder about the questions we hope our writing will answer.  See if your child can tell you about the lead he or she is most interested in using to introduce readers to weather.

In addition to leads we also agreed on the writing criteria we’d have for our weather writing.  We thought each piece should be at least five pages (have five subtopics), and each page should have at least five sentences. We decided that our writing should how our understanding of the topic so that readers would find it interesting. And we thought we should include one illustration.  Many of the students are continuing to research, but some of them are already at the writing phase.  Some are typing on computers, while others are choosing to handwrite their pieces. In addition to publishing them so we have a weather library in the hall for others to read, the children are excited about posting them on their blogs for all to read.

Bits and Pieces

  • We’ve posted our second blog post. This post features a personal favorite, hobby or interest. With this post we learned how to copy and paste text from one file to another.  It will take time but, with practice, this will become second nature.
  • We also learned about making quality comments.  We’re trying to begin with a specific compliment that lets the blogger know we actually read the post.  Then we’re trying to add a connection or question to get a conversation going. And finally we’re trying to remember to sign our names so the blogger knows we visited.
  • A HUGE thank you to those who have commented and shared the URL with family and friend.  Comments are motivating.
  • In Open Circle we’ve discussed positive self-talk and growth mind-set.  We are trying to be as encouraging to ourselves (and our classmates) as possible.
  • Our next field trip will be to Strawberry Banke.  It is on Monday, November 19.  Permission slips went home on Wednesday.  The cost of the trip is $5.00.  We’ll be learning all about Thanksgiving through the ages as we travel from house to house and learn how the celebration has changed.

There is an Early Release on Wednesday, October 24. 

Dismissal is at 12:00.

Our Week – October 11

For a short week, we certainly fit a lot in.  We continued our weather research.  We’re finding out a lot of interesting facts.  We began student blogging this week. The class is very excited about creating a first post.  Thanks to those families who were able to read them and leave a comment.  Please share the blog url with family and friends, near and far.   It is exciting to open the blogs and find comments from grandparents, aunts and uncles. Thank you for your time and attention with this.

As we prepared for the open house it was interesting to stop and realize how much we’ve been doing in our first thirty days of school.  Thank you for joining us last night.  I hope you found the information helpful.  Please don’t hesitate to ask any questions at they arise.  If you were unable to attend, please look for the hand-outs in your child’s Friday envelope.

Learning Properties of Multiplication

We’ve been learning how to create and read arrays.  This practice enabled all of us to understand how the Commutative Property of Multiplication works.  It doesn’t matter if you have 3 rows of 4 or 4 rows of 3.  Both equal twelve.  To show this understanding we made buildings to create Multiplication Main Street. Our buildings show how this property works.

We also learned how to break arrays up into manageable parts.  For instance when looking at an array that is 5 rows of 13, we can break the 13 into 10 and 3 and easily do the multiplication then: 5×10 and 5×3.  After working to organize our thinking with arrays, we learned how to use the Distributive Property with multiplication. We’ve still got some work to do with this property before everyone feels fully certain of what they are doing, especially when hundreds turn to thousands.

Living the Life of a Reader







As part of our goal setting process, we’ve begun talking about what it means to live the life of a reader.  We’ve been reading poems and books about books, reading stories and loving certain kinds of books as a way to discover all the different types of reading people do. The children have been asked to think back and talk to you about books that were and/or are important to them. They could be favorites from when they were younger – books they asked to have read over and over, or they may be books they spent so much time with they could recite them without even looking. They can also be books that have been read aloud to them at home or at school.  They could be books of topics they are interested in.

Hopefully each child can bring in a collection of between 3 and 5 (2 and 6 are also fine) books, maps, magazines, charts… texts that have been important to them in becoming the reader they are today. We’ll create a reading museum with these texts on Tuesday, October 16.

Bits and Pieces –

  • We’ve begun our fourth chapter read-aloud of the year, The Wild Robot. This is a fantasy, full of rich description. The setting is important in this book.  Ask your child what he or she remembers about the island where Roz has washed up.
  • On Thursday two North Hampton firefighters visited our grade, Steve and Brendan. They shared some important fire safety tips with the classes and answered many, many different questions.
  • In Open Circle this week we began discussing how people know when they feel upset and where in their body they experience that emotion. Some in the class feel that emotion in their stomach, while other feel it in the chest and still others feel it as a tightness in their shoulders.It was an interesting discussion and one that we’ll continue as we learn to recognize the many side of “upset.”
  • We have continued to work on our Multiple Intelligence (MI) pie charts. We’re having fun noticing all the ways we are “smart.”

All About Us

Today we are each trying to create a first post on our own blogs.  We practiced by writing this blog post together as a class.  We are 3E.  We are 3rd graders.  We are kind.  We try to treat others the way we’d like to be treated.  We all try to listen and have others listen to us.  We are a safe, learning and respectful class.  We are patient.  We try to be helpful.  We all like reading.  We all like to solve problems efficiently too.  We have fun.

Please leave a comment and tell us what you like to do.

Our Week – October 5

Our week seems to fly by. I guess that’s a good thing – we are exploring lots of things every day and all seem to be enjoying what we are doing. This week we finished our third chapter read-aloud for the year.  With the help of Mrs. Wyman, the students were each able to take the first step in setting up their personal learning blog.  We’ve begun our first research project and feel surer about how the commutative property of multiplication works.

S.E.L. – Developing our Multiple Intelligence Pie Chart

During our Open Circle discussions during the last few weeks we’ve been discussing feeling and emotions. We’ve sorted them, calling some uncomfortable and other comfortable.  We’ve wondered if we always know how we are feeling – we’ve discussed how breathing can help us relax.  We’ve also discovered that we can read other people’s emotions by paying attention to their body language.

We’ve spent time learning more about ourselves as learners.  Last week we took two different surveys to uncover our multiple intelligences.  We are using that information to create a pie chart of “how we are smart” to show which areas of intelligence are our strengths at this time.   While we’ve been doing that, we’ve also been exploring how we can make our brains grow and develop due to our interest, attention and willingness to practice even when it’s a challenge.  It is interesting to hear the children talk about what they are discovering about themselves and the habits we can develop that may lead us toward success.

Problem Solving – Arrays and the Commutative Property

Our goal in daily problem solving is to offer the children opportunities to practice logical thinking and to find ways to use new knowledge to become more efficient over time.  The children choose a strategy they can use to document their thinking and follow through to an accurate solution.  This is challenging.  When you and I read the problems we see that most of them can be solved with multiplication, but because it is still new to your children, it is not always their choice.

Please expect this.  There are many things happening all at once in this thinking process.  The children have to read the problem and visualize the operations that are happening in the story.  The problems generally have two-steps, sometimes more, and often more than one operation.  They have to keep them separate which is not always easy.  The problems also use amounts that are manageable, but still challenging.

At this point you’ll notice any range of strategies.  Sometime the children are drawing out the problems.  This can become cumbersome and mistakes are often made when counting.  Sometimes children are skip counting or using a doubling strategy.   Sometimes children are able to mentally manipulate amounts in their minds but are off by a bit when the value of a digit is confused. Each child is using what s/he knows to solve the problem, and with time will become more efficient. With time you’ll see changes and progress.  We’ll be keeping samples of problems in the classroom to document growth.  You may want to do that too so you can share the growth that you see when you look at problems from across the year and notice as more sophisticated strategies are being used with all four operations.

We’ve spent some time understanding the ARRAY model of multiplication.  We’ve learned about the commutative property.  We are sure that 6×7=7×6 even if we are not instantly sure of the answer.  On top of that we can create an array of that amount and find a way to solve it (We know how to 7 fives and then we just need to add one more on.  Or we could double 6 three times and add one more.)  It is interesting to discover there are many correct ways to reach a solution.

Bits and Pieces –

  • Curriculum Night is Thursday, October 11.  Ms. Coronato and I will be presenting information about the 3rdgrade curriculum in Mrs. Oliver’s music room at both the 5:00pm and 6:15pm.  We anticipate that each presentation will be about 35 minutes so you can have 10 minutes or so in the classroom to see and respond to the pieces of work or parts of the classroom that your son or daughter has chosen to point out to you.
  • When we completed I Survived the Children’s Blizzard of 1888,we celebrated that accomplishment by having each child illustrate a snowball with their favorite scene and create a snowflake to be part of our doorway blizzard.
  • After we learned about blizzards, each child chose something about weather that he or she would like to become an expert in.  This is going to be the topic for a mini-research and information writing project. We’re going to decide on the criteria and we’re going to find a way to share this information with you.

And of course, the highpoint of our week was having WMUR Meteorologist, Hayley LaPoint come to share her love of weather and meteorology with the third grade.  Here’s a collection of what the children said they learned from the presentation:


  • Lightening is hotter than the sun.  It’s 5 times hotter than the sun’s surface.  Lightning is 50,000 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • The words meteorology and meteorologist started out as Greek words.
  • Both hurricanes and tornadoes can go over water.
  • Cirrus clouds are made of ice.  They mean the weather is changing.
  • I learned that anything that comes from a cloud is precipitation.
  • There are meteorologists who work at Gillette Stadium and Fenway Park so they can decide whether or not to hold or postpone the games so they can give a warning to the fans.
  • Tornadoes can be dangerous and destructive.  There are usually one or two tornadoes a year in NH – they are just really small.
  • The bottom of a cumulonimbus cloud is called a blanket.
  • The biggest tornadoes can be two miles wide.
  • Hail only happens in the summer.  It can be the size of a baseball.

I’m guessing more memories will emerge as we plan our weather presentations over the next few weeks.

Becoming Weather Experts

Our first science inquiry of the year is about weather.  We’ve learned a lot already and we’re excited to learn more and more.  We’ve been learning about the difference between daily weather and climate.  We’re recording daily weather and looking for patterns.  Each morning we read the temperature and graph the weather and precipitation of the day.  Soon we’ll be exploring barometric pressure as well.  We are learning how to use these points of data to make reasonable predictions about what kind of weather might happen next.

Each student has chosen a type of weather he or she would like to explore in more depth. Some will be researching and learning more about tornadoes.  Others will be learning about snow storms, while still others, will be learning about blizzards.  Some children will research hurricanes and other are researching different aspects of weather like clouds, rainbows and the study of meteorology.

Children will be using print resources and online resources too.  Here are some online links to get us started.

Weather for Kids offers some basic information and may answer some of the questions you have. It is easy to navigate from one type of weather to another.






Web Weather for Kids shares more information, projects and activities that can help you discover even more about weather too.









Weather Wiz Kids is a site created by a meteorologist.  She is sharing her love of weather and lots of information too.






The NOAA website has some interesting links.  It is sophisticated and a bit tricky to navigate – but I bet you’ll find an answer to a question there that you can’t find anywhere else.






Here’s a place to start as you research to become a WEATHER EXPERT!